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Is Destiny 2 Worth Playing Without DLC?


Destiny 2 is a popular action MMO available for free. There are a ton (12 to be exact) of DLCs for Destiny 2 available on any platform begging the question – is it even worth playing without them?

We spent some time playing Destiny 2 without DLCs. So that we can compare it to a premium experience with all DLCs available in the game and give you the best perspective possible.

Free VS Paid Player

The free version of Destiny 2 is only for you to try the game no matter how you look at it. After completing the first New Light questline (which takes a few hours) there are only a few things left to do.

You can try out three subclasses and some powerful gear. Have an introduction to the core playlists of the game and a summary of the story thus far.

New players can also explore all of the destinations available in the game once they get enough XP to unlock them.

Destiny 2 new player map
Destiny 2 new player map

All that is great. But the actual content and loot that make Destiny 2 great are locked behind multiple DLCs and/or season passes. Those include:

  • Dungeons
  • Raids
  • Dedicated location activities
  • Seasonal Activities
  • Exotic Quests

While some Dungeons and Raids are available to the free-to-play player, the rest of the content is very repetitive. If you play Destiny 2 without DLCs you will quickly get bored of it.

Which Destiny 2 Activities are Available Without DLC

Free Solstice of Heroes event in Destiny 2
Free Solstice of Heroes event in Destiny 2

To give you a better idea of the things you can do in Destiny 2 without DLCs, here’s a complete list of free-to-play activities and what you can expect from them:


The playlist is made out of dozens of missions that you play at random. But most of them are structured in the same way. As a team of three, you progress through the location, defeat enemies, interact with 1 or 2 unique mechanics, and defeat the boss.


A 4v4 PvEvP mode. Teams have to defeat combatants and collect motes (that drop from them) against the clock. It’s a fun mode but it only has four maps and can get very repetitive.


This is Destiny 2’s PvP. There are a bunch of maps and modes to try out including Competitive. If you love PvP you won’t really need anything else.

Dares of Eternity

Dares are actually a very fun activity with good loot and unique gameplay. Even in the endgame, we found ourselves playing Dares quite often. However, some of the rewards, including cosmetic ones, are locked behind a DLC.

Prophecy Dungeon and Reprised Raids

For these activities, you will need your own team as they have complex mechanics and require more teamplay. You should definitely try them out as this is a glimpse of Destiny 2’s endgame.


These are the open-world locations available in Destiny 2. You can explore them to complete Public Events (random world events), loot chests, and clear Lost Sectors (hidden areas). While it will be fun when you are just learning the game, these activities do not offer any actual value.


An honorable mention is the free events. There are 4 events throughout the year and each has new loot, cosmetics, and game modes to play. Each event lasts for three weeks and can be a good time to jump into Destiny 2.

What Destiny 2 DLCs are Worth Buying?

Destiny 2 DLC available for purchase
Destiny 2 DLC available for purchase

If you are planning to buy a few DLCs to enrich your gameplay, here’s what you can consider buying. Because let’s be honest, the amount of DLCs available for Destiny 2 is ridiculous and confusing.

Latest Annual Expansion (Currently: Lightfall)

Your main priority should be the latest annual expansion. It will not only get you caught up with the story but give you access to the most relevant quests and activities in the game.

Older expansions are great, but they don’t have as much value apart from the main campaign. And each campaign usually takes around 6-7 hours to complete.

Current Season Pass

Next comes the Season Pass of the current season. Unlike many games, Season Pass not only gives you access to the Battle Pass rewards, but also this season’s seasonal activities, story quests, exotic quests, and new loot.

Lightfall and Beyond Light

In case you are from the future where The Final Shape expansion is already out, we highly recommend you get Lightfall and Beyond Light expansions next.

Each expansion will give you access to a new Darkness subclass: Strand (Lightfall) and Stasis (Beyond Light). They are great fun to play with on every class with unique playstyles and builds.

Armory Collection

The final DLC you can buy is the Armory Collection which includes the 30th Anniversary Pack and Forsaken Pack. If you already have one of the two, do not buy the Armory Collection, just get the remaining part separately.

This collection will give you access to full rewards in Dares of Eternity as well as two dungeons and a raid. Considering that you can get three cosmetic sets from Dares of Eternity, along with endgame content this is a pretty good deal.

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Based in the UK, Edward is a Guides Editor at Gamezo. He's all about esports and gaming and plays a little bit of everything. But his favorite game of all time is Destiny 2.